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tv   Book TV  CSPAN  October 1, 2011 10:00am-11:00am EDT

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from his perspective he would have said if he had to pick that central park was still his baby. it was his firstborn. in prospect park they learned from their mistakes so they found someone who was willing to bundle the whole thing and not as the single question and able to use a lot of the teams they put together. that is the other thing about olmstead, his ability to manage you pointed out. but managing by taking good people who could handle the job. ..
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brooke hauser will be reading from her book and then will be in conversation and we will have a short q&a afterwards. let me briefly introduce brooke hauser. brooke hauser has written for "the new york times," los angeles times among other publications that she's originally from miami, florida and new york and then were full, massachusetts. she has her days at columnist
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and editor at "the new york times" for the past 17 years and is the deputy editor at the home section. he's written for harper's atlantic commonwealth and the progressive in teaching that we are university. just quick housekeeping. these turn up your cell phones and as you've seen coming c-span tv is so made the event tonight. further q&a, will be passing around microphones if you could wait for the microphone to riccio m.ed. bring you a microphone so we can record it. please welcome brooke hauser, author of the book "the new kids." [applause] >> so, as suzanne said we are here to discuss brooke's new book and it is about just to get
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a capsule summary come to the international high school, which specializes in advocate teams and broke spent much time at the school chronic going to year the life of the seniors. brooke will do a reading at the portion later. i wanted to ask a few intricate three questions. the first of which, brooke, it you're an experienced journalist. you've written about hollywood in about 12. how did you come to this topic? >> guest: actually come in the person you let me to the international schools in the audience. his name is ronnie saha or ever went to college together. and he was working at the international rescue committee, which was an agency that helps to resettle refugees across the country. and at the time, his girlfriend,
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lower income was interested in doing some volunteer work with some of the students at the bronx international high school. i heard about the school and became became interested sat at the high school where kids come from so many different countries and speak so many different language is. i do want to say there'll trained to become american because not all of the kids are, but they adapt to to the country will go to high school. so i found out there is an international high school in the back. the international high school in a tiny out that the school. i could walk there from my apartment. >> for me at least, for this reader contest into a feature of the book is its factual richness. it is to be an example of really good immersion reporting like harper airing right for adrian nicole leblanc. you can tell it everywhere that the depth -- from the depth of
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detail how much time was spent being, interviewing, recording, thinking. so i naturally wondered how much time did you spend? how many days free with the school? hominy student-teacher interview and how did you decide what was enough? >> i don't know how i decided that was enough. i think that my tasks to say but with enough because it was basically keeping in with all of my notes. i spent a lot of time at the school. i was therefore an article that i wrote. frank was an editor at "the new york times" in a wrote about the prominent international high school. and saddam was the first amount of time they spent their then they went back and spent a year porting. but the following year i was still in touch with the kids in the following year still in touch with kids in reporting until basically went to the printer. so it was a lot of time, a lot
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of notes in my life is on hold basically until this finished. >> at the international high school, something like 28 languages are spoken or were at least a year you reported on. that must've been a reporting challenge for you. how did you deal with that? >> just a lot of aspirin because they think teachers can a late, it's really, really loud at the school. you know, it's clouded any high school, but we been here 28 languages at once in the halls, it's amazing. the kids were a huge help to me because several of the students i wrote about are already very, very proficient in english and of course the native language and spoke several native languages. they were translators to me. so i can arrange a translation problem, i didn't have to hire a
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formal translator. i just asked the kids. >> how many students are there at that time classics >> i think around 400. the school had been in existence for four years. i was there the fifth year. so the student body kept growing. but now i think it was the biggest crossover that was just accepted this year. and did something around 400 students now i think. >> how about all those students teach you choose the ones that he would talk to an interview and then write about in your book? >> i had a question that i asked all the teachers at the beginning of the year, which was when you go home at night, where the students who can't stop thinking about? and really, the teachers led me to find these students. one girl from china had written a college essay about coming to
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america. her very fewest week she was supposed to move in with her father whom she hadn't seen in years. when she got her on her first day, her new stepfather didn't want her there and take her out. for one english teacher, that was the student she couldn't stop thinking about what she went on that night. every student basically found that way except for a police car lights on she -- i wanted to observe the new studio. i really just ran into her and found it very interesting she was the only person in the whole school this poker language. no one else did, so i thought she would be an interesting person to follow. >> i know many of these students, like the chinese girl you mentioned hegemonic passages from their native country to america. and i believe that's the subject of your reading.
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>> so many of the kids have amazing stories and the one i wanted to read was about a tibetan boy named malmo who escaped by hiding in a suitcase to travel to the border of nepal. so he and i worked pretty hard on his story to get all the facts straight and not i'm going to read. >> okay. [laughter] dead-end of men said to set up to motioning to a suitcase on the ground. it was fall 2003 about two years before nawan would arrive at international. sad to look at them in the back of the suitcase. the man with his father's friend, a farmer with a white
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tee and they sewed with worry. the suitcase looked very fancy. black nylon with the plastic handlebar cover up or we'll, rep wilson metallic stickers. nawan had never touched a suitcase before and he inspected it closely. there was lettering that he could not read. the main compartment with two by three feet from the size of a child's coffin. nawan with small for a loving, but wasn't that mall. he thought the farmer must be joking. the black suitcase would be won as many bags stuffed in the back seat as if the death silver toyota that was supposed to deliver nawan. the first leg of a journey that would end it dharamsala india. in a tea colored like him he could make out a few typefaces, older tibetans would pay to drive out if i said before city stretched out of its slumber. he was about to join the others in the farmer motion towards the
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suitcase. get him he said unzipping the top. set up to stare blankly at the man in the suitcase. hurry before the police come and take us to jail. how long nawan whispered? one night and one day. i was how long it would take to travel from the capital to the border, assuming they didn't get caught. the actual distance is much shorter, but drive would be circumvented several chinese checkpoints along the way. they didn't have much time except for the growing operation of the patella palace from the valley, lasso was still dark the best in the sun would rise, shining a spotlight on anyone he do to sleep. sad to guide him. he managed himself back in his grandmas biped receptor this older guy there and a little cousins only a few weeks before. inside the suitcase he clenched his knees to his chest and walked to the site. for a brief moment he saw the
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farmers face. its broad plain stick and shadows take a field under a passing cloud. then there was is it being found and everything would. nine hours into the journey, nawan vomited, the bitter and it's by t. and breakfast singeing his throat and into the fibers of his pants. they're generous and he, gush of warm liquid rushing down his leg, cooling and the speakers. the upside down dark dark, his tears flowed in uncharted directions. when a suitcase for his clothes, nawan felt scared that strong. he still wear white silk scarves that his grandmother placed around his neck as a parting gift. clasping his hand between his knees, he whispered a buddhist prayer. those are the last words he spoke. he was afraid to make a sound. in the village she details about tibetans cottony passage by chinese police. friends told nawan about prisoners had been beaten with
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clubs, shot at and change torture techniques like one code to even bamboo sticks and imagine police under there but them's fingernails. even if nawan wanted to scream, no one would hear him. he couldn't hear anyone either. within seconds of the zippers have been coming at us control of the senses. he couldn't see, the default castling leaking from the car engine. half of his body went cold, that's closest to the ac ground. he tried moving his arm and leg of his other site but found he was trapped. something had fallen on him, but he wasn't sure what. they sounded like a dead body being protrude creative. but if nawan realized he was the son of suitcase and stacking. and out, and now, breathing had become an impossible task is hard to leave that it it has ever been automatic. the more he thought about it the more he panicked, gasping for
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air. the other suitcases piled on top of his own. his left arm was frozen. he felt every bump in every rock of the road. these are the engines sputter to a halt about must've been please check point and clenched his fist until it started again until the engine started skin and then in his ear. he summoned the world beyond his own eyelids. the chinese soldiers who crowded the streets of life that would be far behind them. sometimes his thoughts drifted to his grandmother. his mother had died three days after he was born. mushy was the the one who nawan with a glass bottle filled with milk from a yak. when the village women weren't able to breast-feed. the day they left, she cooked a meal of malmo dumplings. on my last taste of home before nawan and his brother mounted horses and headed west.
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in the blackness of the suitcase can he could see her standing in the tall grass waving goodbye. since the dalai lama fled in 1959, tens of thousands of tibetans have followed this path. i said to neither stories. many died of starvation or getting trapped in the ice during the long track. for years his father had planned his own escape and he was the first of nawan's family to flee, rising in america in 2003. a few minutes later he sent for his two sons. sad to codpieces that the vapors whenever they came back the nearest district with the phone. a lot, nawan and their fathers had would ride that horse where they would board a bus and get on a truck headed for the capital. after getting their bearings, they were supposed to join up with a paid guide to make that
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trek across the mountains to the border of nepal. if they made it that far a nepali man would create them. for 2500 yen per boy, he would pose as her grandfather and be waiting with a piece of coal and a cot. the car was supposed to transfer the brothers to a tibetan refugee center in kathmandu. the core whispered nawan and lapsing to paint their faces a shade darker said they would look like nepali children. tibetan children are known for their ready red cheeks, the extra blood flow resulting from high altitude and no at the plateau. plateau read, the cheney sometimes it. the first part of their journey had gone as planned, but in life that a crucial part changed. one evening the farmers told nawan it can't nawan it time to see an oracle that he knew the oracles were wise men who traveled between the physical and try to pull world and could see into the future.
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the farmer passed on the far post the oracles message. lapsing was two years older and much bigger should walk through the mountains of the paid guide you do a trick by thousands of miles and several weeks. nawan was too small. he simply wouldn't survive the trip. the oracles that it's better to come up in the car the farmer explained. nawan studies to talk about how tiny we last. he fit into two outstretched palms, not much larger than one of the potatoes plucked from their fields. despite its small size, the lawn that the lawn that in their village had given him a big name. set to talk to me, loosely translated it meant was that powered another step. several thousand miles west of where he was born, his english teacher, and perry sits a glass top table and initiated their backyard in bedford stuyvesant and reads the paragraph before
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her. the suitcase closed at night when applying. my body was squeezing before many suitcases and i can barely breathe. after hours and hours squeezing under suitcases come i felt depressed and hot. i just wanted to escape, but many suitcases were stacked on me. i was sweating and wanted to scream but i knew it would be worse. they could go after me sweet grandma and hurt her because she was sending me to freedom. i could get beat up or killed. i knew i would never get to see my single dad. i would never achieve what my mom's hope in grandma's hope. so i made my hands fist and three strongly. it is 7:00 a.m. and the sober sun blinks in the clouds like a cursor in a blink page. and cereal is getting stuck in her coffee lukewarm. in between sips from her favorite place but i'm not, she stays at the purple morning glories creeping up a chain-link
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a suitcase? he's lucky to have survived. grading pen in hand, she tries to imagine an 11-year-old nawan piled up in the darkness, his fists clench. surely he understands things that she does about life. or does he? he's ending his brief. he's in the suitcase 90s in india and never learned what really happened next. as planned, nawan that the nepali man at the border, disgraced himself on the switched cars and headed to kathmandu. his brother wasn't so fortunate on his first attempt to make it to the border. but check into the himalayas, he was arrested and jailed by chinese police. the boys later reunited and dara and in 2005 featuring their father in the united states where they were granted what a close eye on. clearly nawan stories too complex. to squeeze it all into a three-page college essay.
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but there is no final message coming to a deeper of understanding. in the minutes before she heads to school, said he wonders about the father who fled, the mother who died in the grandmother who nawan might never see again. she wonders about his daily life we were on his family's farm. was he still the same boy when he emerged from the suitcase 24 hours later? he never says. the editor sees the story with a great outcome but emotional limited carrier who hasn't begun to impact the events of the past few years. then she remembers, nawan is only 17. it's easy to forget sometimes that by the time they walk into room 337 and on the first day of senior year, many students that are to survive for more trauma and hardship than she could imagine. but that hasn't necessarily made the miser and she doesn't see her kid sister times. but anne looks aside to come she doesn't see the point of
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suitcase, but a punky kid wearing converse on a black t-shirt inscribed with the yellow sign facing the message, i hate you. she sees a teenager who started turning in assignments i'd much rather read "the new york post" and comment on how miley cyrus looks back and pay attention in class. he can seriously fall behind in college if he doesn't make an attitude adjustment quick. she sees a boy who is much more than a manned and much less. [applause] [applause] >> it's those details like plateaux red and the purple morning glories that are the kinds of immersion reporting -- first of immersion reporting then i think you can see in that passage. wow, what a story. in a suitcase the mountains,
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over national borders waiting for the police. if you went to high school here in america and a fairly normal high school compared to that, how was the big picture at the high school of their with children like him so traumatized by events in the past? >> how was that -- >> how his international high school compared to the standard stereotype high school that we would think of here. >> well, that is why i was so "genius of place" to school because even though the kids do have really -- some of them have really amazing stories of how they got here in perilous journeys in different backgrounds, they are still teenagers and they could relate to that very easily because i think we can all relate to going to high school in america. even though it's an
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international high school, it's not that different. their prom is definitely a little different than my prom, but they have to deal with sats and where to sit in the cafeteria and they're always on facebook. and so i think the picture they are not so different at all. but their backgrounds certainly are different. >> where they are jocks, that kind of thing quite >> i was looking for the clicks and i spent a lot of time in the cafeteria and is looking for mean girls and jocks and lots of groups that make for good gossip and fun in high school of. i don't think i ever found mean girls. maybe a couple, but not like the movie mean girls can wear there is a clinical hanging out together. there were groups i wouldn't have ever expect it.
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some infected many convoys are played baseball together and maybe to be considered jocks. but then there was a group they never had in high school, which was a group of boys who all wanted to grow up and become professional hair designers. and i'm still not sure what that is. but they had amazing here. i mean, really. and then there was a table that was not automatic yak herders, that several. and farmers. previous, not anymore obviously. >> so did the students sort of gathered by ethnicity? was there a lot of mixing of different ethnicity click obviously cultural issues. >> haven't seen the cafeteria is there a clicks they did decide according to ethnicity.
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i mean, i think that the school wants to see the kids nick sent me to mix in classes, but given to their devices during free time and lunch, i think it's natural, especially if you're learning english all day long and think it's natural to go towards friends who speak your language so you can relax a little bit and feel comfortable speaking in your native language. so you saw definitely cliques of kids from africa, west africa, kids from mexico and guatemala can speak spanish together. but then there were a few kids who were more like nomads in a metaphorical sense, where they wandered around the cafeteria and talk to anybody and hung out with anybody. >> right, did you find that -- obviously the story of the suitcase and other stories you are dealing with teenagers who are changing every day. arab language issues issues that
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you had. part of the lessons in teenagers as it's kind of embellishing the truth. as a journalist come at the issue of verification, did you face obstacles, travels, worries about that? >> definitely a lot of worries. i have a section in the back of the boat where i say basically, i did the best of my ability to report things as accurately as possible, but all human memory side and in my case i was talking to teenagers who were recalling events from their childhood. it happened a long time ago in another country and they are now telling me these stories in a new country speaking of language, english. so i think probably a lot was lost in transit and in translation. so i wanted to explain that this is pretty close. you now, nawan's story, for
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instance, you know, i think you told us so many is that a lot of details to read their blogs -- i think that when i sat down with him to get the story from top to bottom, a lot of new stuff came out because i wasn't just talking to nawan. i went to his house and he lived with a bunch of tibetan bachelors, including his father who had a girlfriend. we had dinner and i had tea, that was intense. butter tea if you've ever had it is like butter. so over letters he, basically five or six men were trained to help flesh out not just sub to story, but their story of how they have lifted that they were speaking in tibetan and nawan had to translate six people talking at the same time.
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that was a little confusing. and people started drawing maps and then the maps are great, but then i realized all the labels they had written in tibetan. and if you looked at a map online, those village names written in chinese. there was a mass. it is difficult. so we just went over it a million times. and that was one time that i heard the story and then i heard the story about 10 more times and asked his father about it again and that was nawan like three more times to go over everything. >> right, there's the issue of immigration is obvious he a huge and perennial political issue in teenagers. so you tell wonderful stories of the vote. how did you decide how much to do though, how much space to do a bigger social political context and how did you decide how much that should be clicks
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>> i didn't devote a lot of time to political issues. i devoted a couple of maybe a chapter or two. one because i make a newspaper article that comes out that day and talks about the issue of the day, a book comes out and a lot of those issues are relevant anymore depending on legislation that has been passed. my editor, leslie meredith was helpful in reminding me of that. and when i did get into more of a political discussion, a crude naturally at a seen that happen in the put. so there is a chapter called, illegal, where the scene takes place at the school. when i posted a pta meeting unlike any other pta meeting you've ever heard us. and it wasn't like bake sale and cookie top.
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the subject was legalization and citizenship. and parents were invited to ask any question they had in that area. and the principal at the time, you know, gave an introduction in english and spanish and their other translators there who are able to translate the conversation in many different languages. an immigration lawyers came in to talk in one of them handed out a packet of cartoon drawings for the parents who didn't speaking glitch. it was called what to do in the event of an immigration raid. >> not your bake sale pocket. >> it showed graphic novel drawings of ice agents, you know, like with dark shades and chiseled jaws, shackling anagrams in their own homes and carting them away at the detention center.
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and in another frame we saw what happened to their cartoon wise than they had cartoon peers jumping off their cheeks. it was really in times. so definitely a theme and part of the story parotid that chapter. it was natural to talk about it. >> sure, that's it in your narrative and you are able towards that. >> and the dream that i talk about the piece of legislation that wasn't passed finally that would, to put it. basically, would create a conditional passage of two citizenships for certain undocumented students who came here before the age of 16 aware that allow them to get federal financial age to go to college. so that also is natural because there were 15% of the senior class is undocumented, which was a huge number. and they were all applying to college like all the other kids. they work just as hard, did just as much study, data entry and
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ship and take tests the end they were basically in a difficult position. college is expensive if you don't get financial aid or scholarships, it's not likely to get to go. >> have you followed the fortunes of those students? >> yeah, i've seen certain students more than others, but i spoke with almost half of the high school. i would kind of get wind of things from facebook. people end up all over the place. a lot of kids are doing really well in different ways and areas. >> many of the students seem so endearing and their stories are so tonight that i wonder if it was hard to maintain it, you know, journalistic distance. >> yeah. >> advice. how did you do it better to just keep struggling? >> i really liked the kids and i really like the teachers to.
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i kind of wanted to be friends with everybody, but i couldn't because i was writing about them and i've always been the past been very careful not to get too close to the subject. but i think it's different when you write about kids because, i don't know, it feels a little different. you are more invested in the lives of kids if you are writing about that. so i definite boundaries, but someone needed help with a college essay, i wouldn't write it. i would maybe have a few notes in the margin or something and i would allow myself to do stuff like that. but i was invited to parties and dinners and i could never fully relax. i could never drink as much as i wanted to. i wanted them to be friends, but i couldn't let them at that point. since then i think i've developed friendships with people who i met at the school, but i had to be done with the
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book first. >> i knew some of the students are from cultures that involve arranged marriages in that sort of thing. did any of the masquerade vice about those questions? how did you do with it? >> they didn't ask my advice about arranged marriage, but a few of the girls were really interested in when i was going to get married. so we definitely talked about heritage. my husband and i were married then, but we been together for nine or 10 years and one of the girls, it grow from jenin who did get married during her senior year and another girl from china said they were going to come over one day and ask my husband -- at the time a boyfriend when he was going to propose. they were very interested and they did to other teachers. they're asking what were they going to have babies. they got started earlier than
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me. so not advice, but we definitely shared and funny conversations. >> so we accepted by the students? did anyone resent to? was their suspicion? >> i'm sure there is suspicion and they may not have heard about all of it. they were definitely a few cool boys who -- while, once i went with the students to a pharmacy to branson ayn rand. i think he was like buying cigarettes are sent to and the clerk at the stores that i see you've brought your moms with you. and then, they did accept me i would say. a couple of the cool boys if they don't touch that lady. she's got a notebook and she's writing down everything you say. so certainly most of the kids are pretty eager to talk about their stories.
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>> the hardest thing about writing for me is leaving stuff out because you can't just go on and on. and so you did so much reporting i'm sure that this book is a small percentage of what you learned. so what was the most painful thing for you to leave out? >> well, the teacher who was in charge of the newspaper club that year and i really loved spending time with the kids and newspaper club because i was in newspaper club. that's one of the things i could relate to. and you know, they had a lot of fun with it. there is some interesting articles that would only i think, that english-language learners who were writing a paper for the english-language learners. so they were explaining a lot of things that american high school kids, kids who were born here wouldn't have to explain.
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one year a kid today primer on what is hip hop and did a claimer unhip and a half. when did pakistani fashion. and another girl wrote. she was a huge environmentalist and wrote an article about global warming. so i thought there was great stuff there, but it was cutting into some of this story. it was too much seed and not enough story in the end. >> the school is the center of the supports and it's right in and prospect heights, but you do take some trips outside of the school to the town in connecticut where one student lived in to jessica, the chinese girls apartment. did she make more? was it difficult to keep the school is the center? >> at the boy who lived in
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farmington, the boy came here from sierra leone in a roundabout way. came here from sierra leone asic weight i'm not a scholarship, but won a contest that brought him to live with a christian family in connecticut, even though he was much fun he put his different side and that in farmington, connecticut college is a very, very wealthy town and he was coming from the poorest, poorest place in sierra leone. a muslim boy who suddenly was at church on sunday. a fascinating and i got so wrapped up in the story and that's one of the kid who i like very much. you know, i think that i got a little lost with the story. i just had so much of it in the book and then the editor and geo and i think the publisher read his story and realized he was taking over the entire boat.
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there's still a lot of history in there, but i had to cut a let down. >> there alternative ways to tell the story. did you ever think about telling the whole story through one person? >> his whole story? >> just destroyed this book. >> not like several kids, just one kid? >> did that ever occurred to you? >> yeah, a few of the kids in the book could have their own boat definitely. to me what was interesting was the clash of cultures all under the same work together, so i was wanted to have a few of the kids. one of my favorite relationships in the book is the chinese girls who became good friends with the gemini girl and they shared a diary together. i didn't even have to tell their story because they were telling each other their stories in this diary. so i liked that each student brought up something and another student who was different not
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that different. >> of course the students are the stars, but she also spoke with parents. was that a difficult thing? presumably languages even more difficult for many of them. >> the kids helped me translate. it was difficult talking to jessica's father because he is the one who that -- that his new wife kick her out of their apartment her first week in america. so i think he felt very guilty. but at the same time, i think he had his own side to this story that he really wanted to share and he's not a bad man. he's a complex care there. so it was difficult talking to him. and sometimes just i would be listening to our conversations and he would say things to me about her that he would never tell her directly. like she's my daughter, i love her. and i think that he wouldn't say
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that to her, but she would eavesdrop on a conversation. >> i see, right. journalism is all about not having preconceptions. each event go to try find evidence for. did you have any suspicions or preconceptions before you got exploded as he reported to the story? >> the clicks for something and then i struggled with some other things like a few crows from west africa who had got married and you had read the story in high school. you hear about teen moms. i mean, it's taboo. i think we all have ideas about what a team on this, but these girls were very different. i think that for some of the girls, they clearly meant to get married. you don't get married a mistake. and the babies came after the marriage. one of the girls was a top student in her crate, very
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smart, very successful in school. and so, it is difficult for me. i was happy that she was doing so well, but it was like how does she do that? and her culture, maybe this is normal. so it wasn't so stigmatized. i don't know. she was very capable. >> do you think they you will continue reporting and writing about this subject? teens are immigrants? >> also, i'm very interested in the subject. that's always been interested in immigration. i worked at the lower eastside tnm in college, it traced my families geology and i really like kids, so it's a natural intersection. but we'll see. so i think, shall we get some questions from the audience? are there in the audience members who have a question for
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brooke? about the writing or the contents of the? [inaudible] >> as a writer, what do you think the experience of writing this book has done for you in terms of growing in your craft? >> that's our question. i just -- i think that writing a book is really hard and i was always looking for how do other people do this? and i realized that along the way while i was writing i saw the woody allen movie, whatever works and that kind of became a motto. so i guess what i learned is you have to keep at it until the works. so i don't really have a great answer to that. it's just, you know, you find a way to make a lot of mistakes
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and drafts and you have to throw out a lot of seed and cut the and it's difficult. i think what i realize is that writing is difficult not to beat myself up about it. i've told the kids the same thing because i think a lot of the kid find writing difficult. i tell them that's good. you should find it difficult because it is. >> others? other questions click >> whatever happened to nawan? >> users yerkes university. he got a bunch of log to go there and he's doing really well. and he is studying international relations. he wanted to be an actor during high school, so i got accepted into this stellar adler academy. he had headshot that were very
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handsome and he got some additions them. so he turned to being an actor, but now it ain't he's very political. he was mr. freeh to bed at the high school and i am sure that he would still be very active with tibetan causes and i'm sure he's doing that at syracuse. he's doing all right. [inaudible] 's >> just as doing really well. she said taxol and she is in the business and engineering program. and make them she is still with her high school boyfriend. [inaudible] 's >> no, sorry. gossett. nevermind. yeah, she is doing great. she just asked me to write, to be a reference for her for a job
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interview. that's the kind of thing but i guess i want to do more of especially not the book is done you can do things like that and it's easy for me and fun for me and she's doing really well. >> hey, brooke. behind the pole. my question is actually about education in general right now because there are very intriguing political times in education gets a lot of attention in the press, both make a good and positive than i wanted to ask you what you thought about how your book will leave an impression in that argument in what your impression was after this entire time in the school about the successes that new york city schools cannot potentially. >> yeah, a few of the reviews of the book had said that this is an uplifting book about education and a time where
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there's a lot of bad news. so that makes me happy because i think the school does a great job. i love the school. i gave the commencement speech for graduation and i told kids that the school is one of my favorite places on earth, which is really true. i'm not an education reporter, so i can't speak generally about my views on education with a lot of expertise, but i know now a lot about english-language learners and programs for english language learners. i went to high school in miami where there are lots of them wish language learners and they were kind disaggregated within our same school, which is kind of weird sometimes because, you know, i think those kids sometimes get left out. it really depends on the school. but in the school, all of the kids were learning english together. they were all mixed together.
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i feel that approach really worked because the kids are very understanding of each other. one thing you notice in most middle schools as i think it just torment each other. and that the school, they've really helped. i couldn't believe sometimes they seemed -- i don't know, two bb true sometimes. they really help each other out. older kids will tutor younger kids and they seem invested in each other's success. so i thought that the international model seemed to work. >> hi, first actually, at the end of the year he donated a couple of dresses to the high school. i sent that e-mail to my office, so you can imagine what a funny reaction i got to a guy asking for a lot of prom dresses. i actually mentor for an
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organization called new york needs you as a mentorship program for third generation college students. the latter international. and that's been privy to a lot of conversations they have in terms of opportunities this country allows. no matter where you come from, maybe you've got the smarts and the next tour card in the u.k. were you privy to such conversations in your high school between different kids? >> can you repeat the question? >> i guess their perception about what opportunities they were actually afford it. >> the international network for public schools is the organization that oversees all of these international high schools and the motto for the network is opening doors to the american dream. and the kids took this motto so literally i cannot even tell you. it was amazing and inspiring. i met the first year i was there reporting the prom story, there is a chinese boy and their kids
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want to be doctors, lawyers engineers and then there was a chinese boy who was unwavering in his dream to be the next dog whisperer like cesar milan. and he really went after it. he like intern with a dog rumor and love dogs. this is what he wanted to do. and in the year i was reporting for the book, there is a boy from togo, africa, who wanted to be a zoologist and an actor. both at the same time. and actually, you know, i don't know what is happening with the symbology. he's going to the university of vermont now, but he won the "seinfeld" scholarship. he got a full free ride to college and he met jerry seinfeld at tavern on the trade until jerry seinfeld and going to the next jerry seinfeld. i mean, they really believe they can do anything. a lot of kids do.
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it's amazing. and they do. they go on to do great things. that year five kids got the "seinfeld" scholarship. they'll got free rides. i mean, i think people respond to that kind of optimism and hope they see them as students and people like her students. i don't know if i like all high school students, but i'd definitely like to a lot of the ones who i met at the international school. i have two questions. first i wondered if you faced -- it seems like the students and teachers were very forthcoming more or less. did she pay some bureaucracy within the school administration and so on and so forth? in getting back to the writing question that was first, when you wear during the process by wondered if he took refuge or inspiration from other authors and books along the way.
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>> the school was very open with me. i think writing the prom article helps because it is a very positive article and the founding principle at the school really let me spend a lot of time at the high school. and then the new principal at the school also let me spend a lot of time at the high school. so i think there is a certain amount of trust there that it happened with the prom article. and so, they were great. and that's two books that i read, i read among schoolchildren-based tracy kidder, which is about -- i forget what grade she teaches, third-grader fifth-grade who teaches in massachusetts. and that is by tracy kidder. i read small victories by sam freedom, which he also follows a teacher, a high school teacher in the lowrey seiki teaches a lot of immigrants, but not if you shall international high
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school. so i read both of those, but they really focused on the teachers and i want to focus on the kids. and then frank mentioned nicole leblanc and this is different, but i read a lots of great nonfiction. the! i do question about particularly among kids from definite groups. the set every big problem for their families? took the kids have to hide their relationships from their families, cross-cultural relationship? was their hostility between tibetan and chinese children in india and pakistan needs? >> i don't even know if they're andy and ian kids at the school. there a lot of kids over bangladesh and definitely hostility between the tibetans and chinese. not across the board, but in the
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book i wrote about one instance that happened where nawan who was not the president, but he organized a lot of the students for a free tibet meetings at the high school. he made a fire and handed it out in the cafeteria. come to students for free tibet. will teach you how to read or write in tibetan. when african kid showed up and that was great, but a group of chinese boy's got a hold of the fire and bro, don't go to tibetan club. come to chinese code first because tibet is inside of china or something like that. so there is definitely tension. and as for romances, that said, nawan at the hugest crash on a chinese girl. and had a lot of chinese friends. you know, i think certain high school things just tromp
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political things. so really, she was very cute. and there were a lot of interracial not, intercultural couples. if you look at prom pictures, all you see is contrast. and this girl from china -- they would they would get in a few grosser china who dated boys from the dominican republic. there were tons of couples. at her know if they had it. if they had to hide it, they probably weren't taking it all. some of the muslim girls whose parents were very strict, it's not that they would hide relationships. is that they wouldn't have relationships in high school with boys from high school. but then there were a bunch of boys from yemen who would, you know, send very, very romantic valentine's day cards to gross named geraldine and josefina and
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status and they would really seduce them. >> i just had a question to all the colleges you've named with do think there is something about all of these cultures coming together made disc will have more success with respect to how they perceived education? also, what it says about the validation of battered country and bring cultures together. having worked with a couple schools, on the skids going on seems like it's a successful model over there. >> i think so. i think the international network for public school is a grand and i think a lot of colleges have more than 12 schools now, mostly in new york in a couple in california. i think people now recognize the brand. they know something about the
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international high school in if you cannot international high school student has been placed at a lot of colleges that there's a precedent. i think they have a good reputation and a lot of the kids i know from a few years at the school has ended up at the university of vermont. a couple kids went to see her cues. there have been repeat, you know, schools that now know what it means to get an international has close to. so i think that helps. >> thank you so much. thank you for a really inspiring conversation for coming. brooke hauser will be here signing copies of her book you can purchase upfront and she will be right over there signing. we will play a little movie. they be brooke can say something so you know what it's about.
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>> this is a videotaped and a castro who works at the school date for the cost of 20 graduation ceremony. and it is just kids goofing around, but it's really fun, so will play that. and then, we are going to play some music that you just have to pretend you are 18 to really get into it. and that you are -- it's an international high school prom mix, so you'll hear some chinese mantra and hip-hop, reggae town, ben colley pop, pitbull, just pretend you're prom. [applause] >> brooke hauser reporting on the international high school in new york city. to find out more, visit the author's website, brooke hauser.com. here's a look at the best-selling nonfiction books according to u.s. today
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